Boosting Posts on Facebook: All Your Burning Questions Answered
ADRIENNE WOLTER | 7 MAY 2018
Ever wondered what Facebook boosts were all about?
This Q&A style guide will answer all your burning questions (and the questions you didn’t even know you had!) about boosting posts.
Don’t forget to read our earlier post about when and why to boost a Facebook post. This guide is a great accompaniment to that earlier post, so be sure to check it out too!
Without any further ado, let’s start getting to all those common questions about Facebook boosted posts!
1. What are boosted posts?
To explain boosted posts, we need to first talk about how reach works on Facebook.
In 2009, Facebook realized that the chronological news feed was unsustainable – there was simply too much content there for any user to reasonably be able to sift through each time they visited Facebook.
Also, some news, such as a friend’s announcement that she is pregnant, are just more important than the deli down the street’s weekly specials.
To combat this growing problem, the news feed algorithm was born.
Facebook will display your post to a small sample of your audience. If your post is engaging – that small sample likes, comments, clicks, or shares – then Facebook deems it worthy of showing to even more of your audience.
This is called organic reach. The more engaging the post, the more organic reach it will have.
If you boost a post, you are paying for more reach than your free organic reach. You can boost any kind of update on your page, from links to photos or videos, to reach more people. You can also choose the audience, be it people who already follow your page, or users who haven’t liked you yet.
In the example above, you can see that the post reached 977 people organically, and 838 people in the paid boost.
Facebook boosted posts are a popular option because they are simpler to understand and to set up than traditional Facebook ads.
2. How do boosted posts differ from Facebook ads?
Every boosted post is a Facebook ad, but not every Facebook ad is a boosted post.
Boosts require you to publish an update to your Facebook page. Ads can be created independently from the content of your Facebook page.
That means that ads can be ‘hidden’ from your Facebook page, which makes them handy for ad campaigns (because your page’s fans really don’t need to see all your ad variations). Boosts don’t have that advantage.
You can learn more about Facebook ads in our beginner’s guide to creating Facebook ads.
3. How much does boosting a post cost?
The budget of a Facebook boost is entirely up to you! You simply enter the total amount you want to spend and Facebook will spread it evenly across the duration you choose.
The minimum cost of a boost is $1 per day, so if you want to boost something for a week the minimum cost will be $7.
4. Is it worth it to boost posts?
Facebook’s organic reach metric is frustrating. Unless you have extraordinarily engaging content, generally your organic reach is going to be only a small fraction of your total number of fans.
One solution is to write more engaging content – but sometimes that simply is not possible.
So boosted posts are a simple and cost-effective way to consistently reach a greater percentage of your audience.
Whether a boost is truly worth it is up to your goals. If a greater portion of your audience discovering this content will lead to more revenue for your business, a boost is definitely worth it!
For that reason, it can be a good idea to use boosts to extend the life of already engaging or profitable posts on your Facebook page.
5. How do you boost a post?
Boosting a post is very simple – just follow these steps!
First, find the post you would like to boost on your Facebook page and click the blue “Boost Post” button.
(Note: While I am using this recent post of mine as an example, this is not the ideal example because of the high percentage of the image that is text. Your ad will have a greater reach if under 20% of the image is text.)
Next, choose your objective (website visits, engagements on the post, or messages).
Choose the text of your CTA button.
Next, select an audience that you’ve already created and pre-saved or create a new one. Saved audiences save a lot of time, so anytime I create an audience that I think I might have any chance of reusing, I save it.
Decide whether you want to run this promotion on Instagram or not. I usually uncheck this.
Finally, set your budget and duration.
That’s it! Simply click “Boost” and your ad will be submitted for review. Once reviewed – which can take anywhere from a few minutes to several hours – your ad will automatically begin to run.
6. What is the best time of day to boost a post?
The most important thing to remember when it comes to timing your boost is that you should let the post start to gain some organic traction in your followers’ newsfeeds first – do not just post and immediately boost.
By allowing the post to start to gain momentum, your ad will actually become cheaper.
Other than that, the time of day of your boost doesn’t really matter – the minimum length of a boost is 24 hours, so Facebook will just try to spend your budget when it makes the most sense for your audience during the day.
7. How often should you boost posts?
While there is no perfect answer, one important thing to remember is that you should not boost multiple posts at the same time.
This is because, unless your audiences are entirely separate, you are going to be bidding against your own ads, driving the prices up.
It’s a good idea to leave a little time between your boosts so that you don’t become so familiar to your audience that they scroll right by you. This article by Weirdert Group recommends boosting no more than one time per week.
8. Is it better to boost a post for just a day, or spread your budget across an entire week?
This is another question that depends. When is your audience active?
If you boost a post for one day on Wednesday but most of your audience is active on Facebook on the weekend, you will entirely miss your mark.
But if you boosted for that whole week and your audience is mostly active on the weekend, only a small slice of your budget is being used when it is most likely to reach them.
So, think carefully about the best time to hit your audience when you are planning your boosts.
Another thing to keep in mind is the timeliness of the content. Time sensitive content, such as those promoting an upcoming event, requires shorter boosts. Be sure that none of the boost falls outside of the window of time when your post will be relevant.
For less timely content, a week-long boost is fine, as long as it doesn’t spread your budget too thin.
9. Are there coupon codes for boosting posts?
It used to be pretty easy to get ahold of coupons for free Facebook ad budget. These coupons are now very hard to find, if they even exist at all.
Nowadays, some of the only ways to get Facebook ad coupons are randomly, when Facebook sends you a notification prompting you to apply a coupon and boost a post (which happens very rarely), or by attending a live Facebook for Business event.
But beware, if you see coupons being advertised outside of these contexts, it’s most likely a scam.
10. How do you know it’s a good idea to boost a particular post?
This is one of those times when it is a good idea to listen to Facebook. If you post an update that your audience finds especially engaging, Facebook will send you a notification encouraging you to boost the post and reach even more of your audience. You can trust that these updates are more engaging and will give you more bang for your buck!
Note that these are different from another type of notification Facebook will send you frequently, that other page owners are boosting posts similar to yours. I generally ignore these messages, since they say nothing about the engagingness of my particular update.
Another time it’s a good idea to boost a post is when you are making a super-timely announcement that you need to get out to more of your audience sooner.
11. How effective are Facebook boosts?
You can’t know the true effectiveness of Facebook boosts for your own audience until you give them a try. Fortunately, Facebook makes it very easy to get started with boosts, and the cost to get started is as low as $1.
I personally use Facebook boosts frequently and have had great results with them. They are great for promoting a specific action to your audience, such as signing up for a newsletter, entering a giveaway, or checking out a sale.
If you post engaging content that regularly gets interaction from your audience, and boost the posts that Facebook tells you are the most engaging, you can get great results from Facebook boosts.
12. How do you get the most out of a Facebook boost?
Assuming you are following the advice above, you can get a lot out of Facebook boosts! However, certain things will help you get more out of boosts, so keep reading.
First of all, don’t boost an image that contains a high percentage of text. I mentioned that one of the examples I used above, of an article about embroidery kits, was not the ideal example because of all the text.
Facebook will actually alert you if they auto-detect this to be the case, and your boost will automatically be made less effective or may not even run. This is because they do not want page owners to game the system by putting headlines in large text within their images.
You can use Facebook’s text check tool to see if your image contains too much text for an effective boost.
Another way you can get the most out of a Facebook boost is to boost just your most engaging posts.
Remember, Facebook will tell you when you have a highly engaging update on your hands and will even prompt you to boost it.
Finally, be sure to choose the right audience for your boosted post to get the most out of it.
For example, don’t boost something that only makes sense to your followers to people who don’t already like your page. Or, if you are promoting an app, be sure to only include in your audience people using the specific device that can run the app.
Think through what you are promoting in order to pin down the best possible audience.
If you haven’t already, be sure to check out these our posts for more information about Facebook ads and boosts:
- Cracking the Code: When & Why to Use a Facebook Boost
- A Quick Beginner’s Guide to Creating Facebook Ads
- How to Find the Best Images for Your Facebook Ads
Finally, here’s a quick summary of the Q&A above!
- What are boosted posts?
- Boosted posts are a paid extension of your organic reach for a post on your Facebook page.
- How do boosted posts differ from Facebook ads?
- Boosted posts are ads created from updates on your Facebook page.
- How much does boosting a post cost?
- Facebook boosts cost a minimum of $1 a day.
- Is it worth it to boost posts on Facebook?
- If increasing the reach of a particular post to your audience will result in more revenue, it is worth it to boost a post.
- How do you boost posts?
- Find the post on your page and click “Boost Post,” then follow the steps.
- What is the best time of day to boost a Facebook post?
- Time of day does not matter. It is best to let a post start to gain traction though before you boost.
- How often should you boost posts?
- Don’t boost more than one post at once, and don’t boost more than once per week.
- How should you allocate your Facebook boost budget?
- Timelier content should receive shorter boosts. Be sure to consider when your audience is most active when allocating your boost budget.
- How do you get a Facebook boost coupon?
- The most reliable way to get a boost coupon is to attend a live Facebook for Business event.
- How do you know it’s a good idea to boost a particular post?
- If Facebook tells you the post is one of your most engaging posts, or it is super timely, it is a good idea to boost it.
- How effective are Facebook boosts?
- This is entirely dependent on what you are boosting and who you are boosting it to.
- How do you get the most out of a Facebook boost?
- Don’t include text on more than 20% of the image, pick the right audience, and only boost your most engaging posts.